“What’s wrong with you?”
“Why can’t you be better?”
“Why do you always?”
If you are a mom or dad, you’ve probably spoken a statement you’ve regretted. We’ve all been there.
I’m not one to critique; I’ve said some pretty horrible things to my husband, like:
“You always. . . ”
“Why don’t you ever. . . ”
Plus, some unmentionable statements spoken under my breath (which I won’t get into).
I’m not proud of this. Why? Because words reflect one’s heart.
“But those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man.” (Mt. 15:18)
My words don’t only damage others, they damage me. Untimed and uncontrolled words cause arguments, frustration, anger, irritation, bitterness, strife, worry, restlessness, anxiety, divorce, job loss, court losses. . . (the list goes on).
Plus, when I go about . . . complaining, whining, insulting, attacking, gossiping or faulting someone. . . I never feel good inside. Do you?
I regret my words. But, the hard part is knowing — how to “not say” what I know I “shouldn’t say”. Sometimes my words get out of my mouth before my mind catches up with them.
What is a fast-speaker to do?
THREE VERSES THAT GIVE WISDOM:
ONE: “Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” Col. 4:6
Reflect before responding. Consider: How might Jesus respond? What might God want this person to know? How can I speak truth full of overflowing love (you have to really check your motives on this one)?
TWO: “The soothing tongue is a tree of life, but a perverse tongue crushes the spirit.” Prov. 15:4
Our words make or break people. They give life or steal life. Before you speak, ask yourself: Is what I am going to say life-adding or depleting? Will it produce blessing or increase fear? Not every story needs to be told. Not every detail needs to be divulged.
THREE: “Those who guard their mouths and their tongues keep themselves from calamity.” (Prov. 21:23)
It is a matter of a wise woman to pause before she speaks. If it is not holy, righteous, of good report, worthy or true, shut-eth the trap-eth. Ask God what He wants you to say. Then, respond-eth accordingly.
Along the way, extend yourself grace. Remember, if you spew some horrible-blahness on someone and you didn’t mean to — thanks to Jesus, your mistakes become investments in learning. Be sure to learn from the lesson and develop a plan to speak more wisely next time. If you change your words, you will change other’s lives. Be an encourager, a blesser, a visionary, a hope-filled friend, a source of life and someone people can trust in. Test it out and let me know how it goes.